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Photograph by Emma Fishman, food styling by Micah Morton, prop styling by Dayna Seman.

When a sauce has this many heavy-hitting ingredients—fiery gochujang, earthy tahini, umami-rich soy sauce—you don’t need to add much else. Any noodles you have on hand will work (even spaghetti) and if bitter broccoli rabe isn’t your thing, swap in your favorite hearty leafy green. For a balanced, spicy kick, Issa suggests using O’Food or Mother-in-Law’s brand gochujang.

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What you’ll need


4 servings


oz. fresh or dried wheat noodles (such as lo mein, udon, or ramen)

Kosher salt


cup gochujang


Tbsp. soy sauce


Tbsp. light or dark brown sugar


Tbsp. tahini


tsp. toasted sesame oil


Tbsp. vegetable oil


bunch broccoli rabe, coarsely chopped


garlic cloves, finely chopped

Freshly cracked black pepper

Handful of torn basil leaves, plus sprigs for serving

Toasted sesame seeds and lime wedges (for serving)


Step 1

Cook noodles in a large pot of boiling salted water according to package directions. Drain and rinse under cool running water.

Step 2

Whisk gochujang, soy sauce, brown sugar, tahini, sesame oil, and 2 Tbsp. water in a small bowl to combine; set sauce aside.

Step 3

Heat vegetable oil in a wok or large nonstick skillet over medium-high. Add broccoli rabe and garlic; season with salt and lots of pepper. Cook, tossing often, until broccoli rabe stems are crisp-tender and leaves are wilted, about 2 minutes. Add reserved sauce and cook, stirring often, until thickened slightly, about 2 minutes. Add noodles and a handful of basil and toss gently until sauce clings to noodles, about 1 minute.

Step 4

Divide noodles among bowls and top with sesame seeds and more basil. Serve with lime wedges for squeezing over.

How would you rate Gochujang-Sesame Noodles?

  • Very very versatile with what you have in the pantry! I agree, crushed roasted peanuts are a great add. 1lbs of a protein of your choice (chicken, shrimp, tofu, etc) and doubling the greens rounds it out as a filling entree. I have swapped coconut aminos for the soy sauce, nut butter for the tahini and it was still awesome. Only hard staple to me are the gochujang and sesame oil, don't leave those out. My boyfriend LOVES this recipe. Clean plate and seconds every time.

    • Faith

    • Houston, TX

    • 3/22/2022

  • Super spicy and so flavorful. I squeezed half a lime over the finished dish, rather than serve with wedges, and next time will use more lime juice. Peanuts would be a nice addition and, yes, there is so much to play with here. This was delicious.

    • nilssons

    • Boston, MA

    • 3/20/2022

  • Quick, tasty, easily riffable recipe. I added mushrooms and snap peas, could add ground pork, fish sauce, peanuts, etc. Great template for any time you want some spicy noodles!

    • Alyssa

    • Milwaukee

    • 3/19/2022

  • it's a great recipe 😋 👌

    • alii

    • new jersey

    • 3/16/2022